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Whether or not a chip card requires a PIN is up to the bank that issues the card. And in the US, the overwhelming majority of them do not. If your system was set up to require a PIN on all chip cards, it was set up wrong, and couldn't process cards without a PIN attached (which, again, is most). If it tries to process it with a PIN anyway, the transaction will fail.


While making the transaction fail by fucking up the chip read three times will work, it causes the merchant to pay a higher fee on the transactions because it's less secure, and if it's done a lot, may prompt a fraud investigation.

Mastercard is mainly the one that requires a pin, visa went for chip and signature for their verification, but it is indeed up to the bank specifically.


Australia phased out signing three years ago, so the only time I ever see a prompt to sign these days is on the occasional return or someone with an overseas card.

I also find it amusing when someone with a chipped card goes to swipe, then ends up accidentally tripping the contactless payment as the chip passes by close enough for the screen to register it.


Two factor authentication (chip and signature/pin) is supposedly more secure, but undeniably more annoying. People can't remember pins, and I can't do my signature twice the same myself. The problem is that when you did something first, the newcomers take your innovations and build on them, so when it's time to upgrade, "we've always done it that way" and there's a lot of resistance and annoyance on all sides. (This is the same reason the US has 120v 60hz electricity, when most of the rest of the world has 230v+. It's more efficient to send higher voltage over the lines, but this wasn't well known until it was too late in the US. Too many cables, too many appliances already out there, and it'd be a nightmare to make everyone replace them now.)

Personally, 'stick card in, wait until it howls at you, take card out' is a lot easier.. but 'swiping a card was good enough for my grandpappy and it's good enough for me!' Not to mention people are (still, somehow, in the 21st century) afraid that computers will steal their identity or souls or some nonsense.

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